Re: Trade Deadline
I don't think LA would be enthused about the names hypothetically offered for Kemp. They range from a rental to major league role players to low ceiling marginal prospects to a high reward/extremely high risk prospect.
Similarly, the Pirates are getting a bargain with Bay and given Tampa has reportedly been interested in Bay but hasn't pulled the trigger, it's tempting to consider that Pittsburgh's new saber-savvy FO is playing for an exciting return.
Concerning targeting catchers in the Rangers' organization, they've clearly adopted a philosophy of placing risk on position players rather than arms. The Reds probably don't have an arm attractive enough to make them reverse course in a deal where they'd be giving up a prized commodity like a catcher. Maloney etc wouldn't warrant a return phone call. Homer probably has a trade value something akin to Jeff Niemann (those that have to look him up, get the point already).
I like the idea of targeting Hu as a shortstop but considering he may never be much offensively, it might be more feasible to stretch Phillips by signing a Hudson/Ellis and moving Brandon back to short. Phillips' defensive value would be diminished but it would be an improvement at short anyway while the defense at second would pretty much be static (or even improved with a Hudson). Hudson is going to be very expensive and take a lot of years (something I really don't advocate in principle) but Ellis will likely be undervalued.
"This isnít stats vs scouts - this is stats and scouts working together, building an organization that blends the best of both worlds. This is the blueprint for how a baseball organization should be run. And, whether the baseball men of the 20th century like it or not, this is where baseball is going."---Dave Cameron, U.S.S. Mariner